White Feather, Red Feather

White Plume

Paradigm. [1] There was a boy who lived alone with his grandfather. [2] A spirit or other holy being bestows the name "Wears White Feather" or "White Plume" upon him. [3] A man with an unusual body appears. [4] He tells how supernatural beings had put a nation in peril. [5] He is told to prepare to contest the Giants. [6] The contest will involve the use of a vine to trip up a competitor. [7] A vision will serve as grounds for prophecy by a holy being. [8] He acquires a pipe, which when smoked, issues forth a flock of birds. [9] He keeps at least one feather for himself. [10] He is challenged by the Giants whom he meets in a stand of timber. [11] He engages in a foot race against the Giants. [12] One of the competitors uses a vine to trip up his opponent. [12a] He won the race and killed his Giant opponent. [13] He met someone who appeared to be a woman, but was in fact the last and youngest of the Giants. [14] She wept. [15] One of them went through a metamorphosis. [16] He should have done what he intended, but he did not. [17] Instead he spared the last Giant. [18] He ended up sleeping with a beautiful woman at the behest of the last Giant. [19] While Wears White Feather slept, the Giant got up and broke his back. [20] Then the Giant turned him into his dog. [21] The Giant takes the identity of White Plume. [22] There are two daughters of a chief who have heard of White Plume and through a dream, expect to marry him. [23] The elder sister immediately accepts the imposter as White Plume and marries him. [24] The younger sister is sceptical. [25] The imposter was unable to kill the animals that he was expected to kill. [26] The younger sister took the dog into the lodge and treated him well. [27] The Giant and the dog each went out hunting. [28] The dog was able to take an ordinary object and transmute it into a game animal, which he killed. [29] The Giant imitated his actions and accomplished the same result. [30] However, when the Giant brought back his prey it transmuted back into the original inferior object. [31] The same thing happened again with a different kind of game animal. [32] The imposter and his dog meet the parents of the two sisters. [33] The dog took action to recover his true nature (through a hollow tube of wood ?). [34] He recovered his former identity by sloughing off his old form. [35] He told everyone what had happened to him. [36] White Plume showed his prowess and proved his identity by killing numerous buffalo.

Variant Episode to 11-21. [v-1] His opponent persuades White Plume to climb a tree. [v-2] He becomes stuck to the tree. [v-3] The imposter takes all of White Plume's things and assumes his identity. [v-4] A passerby frees White Plume from the tree. [v-5] The chief realizes that the man who claims to be White Plume is an imposter. [v-6] The imposter is returned to his real nature and is punished (by being turned into an animal).

White Plume Versions

Hočąk. [1] There an old man lived in a long lodge with his grandson. [7] His grandson was always fasting. One day the old man said," Grandson, it is about that time that you should go out and dream. This is the time that they will try you. The reason that I made you fast is so that you would dream something." [2] Then the boy informed the old man," Grandfather, in the upper world the spirits counseled me and called me, 'Wears White Feather for a Headdress. ' In the world below they call me, 'Wears Sparrows for a Coat'." He took off his coat and shook it, and the sparrows began to sing, for the whole coat was made of living sparrows. And on his head he wore a loon and a very white feather. [5] Grandson, beginning tomorrow they will start to test you." [10] The very next morning, just as his grandfather said, someone came and declared," Wears White Feather, you are challenged." " All right," the young man replied. [11] They said," We will race from here to the end of the world. [v-1] His opponents persuade White Feathers to climb a tree in preparation for the race. [v-2] He is catapulted from the tree and lands in the fork of another at the edge of the world, where he is stuck. [v-4] A passing hawk cuts the fork of the tree apart. [11] As soon as he was freed, he leapt from the tree and began running. [0] He found a pipe and a warclub at the tree. [0] The second fireplace had moved during the night. [12a] He wins the race and kills the Giant. [v-1] Once again he climbed the tree. This time he avoided being catapulted by turning into a squirrel and running up and down the tree. [12a] Once again he outraced the Giant to the tree. He ran against the youngest Giant. [0] He found a pipe and warclub there. [12a] He wins the race and kills the Giant. [0] Again the second firelplace had moved during the night. [6] The Giant entangled his feet in a vine. [0] He found a pipe and warclub there. [12a] He won each race and killed all his opponents with a warclub, [17] except the last. [0] The fireplace moved again, but now he could see that it was a woman. [13] The woman turned out to be the youngest Giant. [15] He was about to kill her. He took up the warclub and raised it up to deliver the fatal blow, but unexpectedly, in an instant the man changed into a pleading old woman, her hands extended out before her. [16] This made him pause. [15] Then he raised the club again and just as he was about to strike, there before him was a beautiful woman who gave a cry of alarm. [16] Again he paused, and tried to deliver the blow again, but he could not bring himself to kill such a lovely woman. [0] Then the woman spoke and said," If you spare me Wears White Feather, I will tell you a secret." [17] "All right," he said. [22] " There are two princesses who are fasting in order to dream. Let's go over there," she said, "as I am now at your command." Wears White Feather said, "All right." [0] "You know, they say they are really pretty," she added. [18] Not long afterwards, a very pretty girl came in and wanted to lie with him, but he refused. Soon she came back and told him," I want to lay here because it is so cold out." Indeed, it was very cold. Finally he relented. As the girl lay there, she teased him, so all night he played with her. When morning came, he fell asleep. [19] The other one got up and while Wears White Feather slept, he broke his back. [20] As Wears White Feather lay there groaning, his enemy did things to make him look ridiculous: he pulled his tongue way out to make it longer, then he pulled his mouth to the side; then he made his elbows longer. [21] He took everything he had, his cloak, his headdress, his pipe, and all the rest. [0] He had even robbed him of the power of speech, so all that he could say was," Ho (yes)." [21] Now Wears White Feather had taken on the appearance of a homely old man, but his conqueror assumed the form of his victim. [22-23] They were sisters, Hinų and Wiha. He sat in Hinų's half of the lodge. She exclaimed," Wiha! I told you that I dreamed of Wears Sparrows for a Coat, didn't I?" Hinų was very happy. After awhile, Wiha went outside where she found the homely old man. [20] She called back," Hinų, your husband came with someone, but he is out here." Then the other said, " That is not an old man, that is my dog. He is in no way a human being, but only a dog." [26] The younger sister treated the old man called" dog" well and even let him sleep in the lodge. [0] The man went out hunting a brought back a wildcat, but Hinų would not let her sister have any. [27] Then" the dog" went out. [28] He walked up to an old burnt stump and knocked it one on the side, and out came a bear. He dispatched it with an ax, then returned with it on his back. [0] Wiha would not let Hinų have any bear meat.[27] The" dog" went out again.[28] In the morning he dipped moss into a creek that ran nearby, and it created many beavers. Then he killed a bear by kicking a burnt stump. [29] When the man tried it, he too got a bear, [30] but the bear he brought back transmuted back into a burnt stump. [31] The same happened with the moss and beavers. [32] First the mother visits the sisters and learns of their marriage, then their father came back with her. [7] The woman that he had slept with before now returned and told him how to rejuvenate himself. [33] He dipped four times into a spring, and rejuvenated himself, [34] sloughing off his old man form. Only when he showed her his cast off form, did she accept his true identity. [v-6] He casts the old man's form onto the imposter, and the latter returned to his real form. He was then turned into an owl. [8] He filled his pipe and lit it, and as he blew it from his mouth, many turkeys began to appear. The village streets were full of them. They spent the better part of the day killing turkeys. [9] They stuffed sacks full of feather, and the next morning they found them full of wampum. [36] Then he went out and a great heard of buffalo he drove towards the village, and there he killed them all. Then again the people had a great time. He did this every time they needed meat. [0] Hinų fell in love with him and tried to marry him, but he would not consent. She bothered him a great deal, but he would not give into her. Hinų was a Waterspirit, and took his first child to herself.

Ioway-Osage. [22] Two young women went out to the wilderness to cry to the spirits that they might be blessed to marry White Plumed Man (Wagre Kagre). [0] Many animals came forth and pretended to be him, but when questioned, they could not hide their real identity, so the sisters continued on. [21] Finally, a man came to them wearing a white plume. The girls asked him," What sort of things do you normally kill?" He replied, "I kill such things as deer, bear, turkeys — those things that people normally eat." [23] The older sister accepted him immediately, [24] but her younger sister remained sceptical. They argued, and in the end, the younger sister said, "Then you marry him. I'm going to wait." [23] So the older sister married this man, [25] but the only game animals he ever brought home were rabbits. [0] One day a voice came to the younger sister and announced that at noon the next day White Plume would appear. Just as it had presaged, White Plume appeared with a chorus of birds announcing his arrival. [26] The younger sister accepted him. ([12] The Giants possess a vine to trip up competitors.) [27] The next day the two who claimed to be White Plume went out hunting, and [28] the second one brought home deer and bears, but the first could only manage rabbits. [v-5] His father-in-law quickly appreciated who he was, and [0] even the elder sister realized that her husband was an imposter, but this only made her jealous. [31] The next day the two of them went hunting again. [20] While they were out the imposter changed White Plume into a dog, and when he returned he said White Plume went another direction, but that he had found his dog. [26] The younger sister treated the dog well and even let it sleep in the lodge. [30] When they went hunting, this dog could flush out bears, but the imposter, who in reality was a Giant, could only get rabbits. [33] One day the dog spoke to the younger sister and instructed her on how to help him. She took him to a hollow log, where he entered at one end, and upon emerging at the other, [34] he had shed his skin like a snake, and now he had returned to his human form. [0] Once again the two went out hunting, but during the expedition the Giant froze to death.

Dakota, Version 1. [1-2] There was a boy named Ćaḣpi who lived alone with his grandfather. He was also known as" Wearer of the White Feather" . [0] One day he came upon the ruins of a village that had been burned out, and when he told his grandfather of it, the old man would say nothing. [2] The next day when the boy was wandering about, a voice called to him," Wearer of the White Feather!" [3] Ćaḣpi turned and saw a man whose head alone was made of flesh, the rest of his body was of wood. [4] The wooden man told him of his parents and how the Giants had destroyed their village leaving only him and his grandfather alive. [5] Man of Wood urged him to avenge himself against the Giants. [6] He gave him an invisible vine to throw around the legs of his competitors. [7] The wooden man told the boy to go home and dream, and when the boy had dreamt, [8] he found beside him a large white feather, a pipe, and a sack. When he smoked the pipe, a flock of pigeons issued from the smoke. [9] He put the white feather on his head. [10] The next day he set out for the lodge of the Giants, which he found in the middle of the forest. [11] He raced the youngest Giant, [12] whom he tripped up with his invisible vine. [12a] As the price of victory, he cut off the Giant's head. He won four more times, and beheaded each of his opponents. [3] Then, as he was headed off to play the last Giant, he encountered the Man of Wood, [0] who told him that he would meet the most beautiful woman in the world. But the Man of Wood cautioned him that she would be his downfall unless he turned himself into an elk. [13] Shortly thereafter, he did meet the most beautiful woman in the world, but" she" was really the sixth Giant in disguise. [14] She wept copious tears and said that she had come to marry him, but [15] because he had turned into an elk, she would be without a husband. [16-17] So he returned to his normal form and soothed her grief. [18] He ended up sleeping with his head in her lap. [19] However she turned back into a Giant, and taking an ax, the Giant broke Ćaḣpi's back. [20] Then he turned Ćáḣpi into a dog. [22] The prophecy that Wearer of the White Feather (Ta-waćiŋhe-ska) would achieve unparalleled greatness had reached far and wide. He was spoken of in a village in which lived the two daughters of the chief. Each of these girls had resolved to marry Wearer of the White Feather. [23] When the elder saw a man approaching with a single white feather in his hair, she ran to him and induced him to marry her. [26] The younger sister, who was kind and gentle, took the dog into her own lodge and took good care of it. [27] As the Giant went hunting, he chanced upon the dog and [28] saw him throw a stone into the river. The stone turned into a beaver, which the dog promptly killed. [29] The Giant did the same thing, and he too obtained a beaver. [30] He brought it home to his wife, but when she went outside the lodge to fetch it, all she found was a stone. [31] The next day the dog pulled down a withered branch which turned into a deer. The dog then killed the deer. The Giant duplicated this feat perfectly, but when his wife went out to fetch the venison, she found only a withered branch. [32] The older daughter visited her father the chief and told him of the hunting skill of her husband and his dog. The chief summoned the two of them to his lodge. However, the messengers found not a dog but a magnificent warrior; one who, unfortunately, was completely mute. [33] When they arrived at the chief's lodge, they began to smoke the pipe that the man wearing the white feather produced. Nothing unusual happened until they passed it to the mute warrior, Ćaḣpi, whose smoke soon turned into a flock of pigeons; and no sooner had this happened, than he recovered his speech. [35] He told the assembly of all that had happened to him. [36] Then Ćaḣpi proved his powers by taking a buffalo hide and cutting it into small pieces. These he strew over the prairie, and on the following day, each piece became a buffalo. They were able to slay numerous buffalo that day. Then Ćaḣpi took his wife home to meet his grandfather, who was overjoyed at the great achievement of his grandson. As to the Giant who had masqueraded as Wearer of the White Feather, the chief transformed him into a dog, and had his people stone it to death.

Dakota, Version 2. [1] A boy lived with his father, Dead Shot, and his mother, Beautiful Dove. [0] When the boy was big enough, his father gave him special arrows. The boy shoots at a bird of variegated color having a white topknot. He uses one of his three special arrows. He shot the bird with his red arrow. [7] The parents give a feast. A cloud appears above the sun in variegated colors, and the medicine men prophesy that the boy will become great. [2] The medicine men bestowed upon him the name" White Plume" . [3] An emaciated man shows up at their village. [4] He tells of how three bewitched animals have all but destroyed his nation, which is starving. [0] The chief of this nation will bestow his daughter upon whomever will rid them of these witches. Despite his youth, White Plume volunteers in place of his father. The chief had sent for Dead Shot, who is a famous archer. The next morning he departed. [10] He had to pass through a stand of timber, where he met Unktomi, whom he did not recognize. [0] Uktomi persuades the archer to shoot a bird in the tree for him. [v-1] Uktomi persuades the archer to climb the tree to fetch the bird that he shot. [v-2] Uktomi causes the archer to be bound to the tree. [v-3] Unktomi takes the belongings of the archer in hopes of winning the princess for himself. [23] Unktomi came into sight the young men ran to him with a painted robe, sat him down on it and slowly raising him up they carried him to the tent of the chief. So certain were they that he would kill the evil spirits that the chief told him to choose one of the daughters at once for his wife. (Before the arrival of White Plume, hearing of him being so handsome, the two girls had quarreled over which should marry him, but [24] upon seeing him the younger was not anxious to become his wife.) So Unktomi chose the older one of the sisters, and was given a large tent in which to live. [25] But he could not kill any of the evil bewitched animals. [v-5] The chief was suspicious of his identity and confirmed that he was an imposter by calling the man who knew the real White Plume. [v-4] The younger of the princesses finds White Plume bound to the tree and cuts him loose. [0] He proposes to her and she accepts. His wife helps him make a sweat bath, after which he emerges whole and handsome. [35] He told her of all that had happened. She took him to her father's tent and told him what had happened. [36] White Plume showed his prowess by killing all three bewitched animals. [v-6] They captured Unktomi at midnight while he was trying to escape. The chief then called all of the people together and before them all took a hundred willows and broke them one at a time over Unktomi's back. Then he turned him loose. Unktomi, being so ashamed, ran off into the woods and hid in the deepest and darkest corner he could find. This is why Unktomis (spiders) are always found in dark corners, and anyone who is deceitful or untruthful is called a descendant of the Unktomi tribe.

Oglala Lakota. "IKTOMI AND THE YOUNG MAN." (p. 192) There was a young man who had many horses and plenty of adornments. He had four sisters who made many ornaments of quillwork, painted robes for him, and made plenty of clothing so that he was always well-dressed and finely painted and had plenty of everything. A great chief had a young and beautiful daughter. She was industrious and could make beautiful quillwork and paint robes, and she could tan skins and make good clothing. This chief sent word to this young man that he would give him his daughter for a wife. The young man dressed in his finest clothing, putting on quilled moccasins and quilled leggings and beaded breech cloth. He took with him a fine pipe and a beaded tobacco sack. He wrapped about him a fine buffalo robe of a young cow taken when the hair was the best which his sisters had tanned, soft and white, and upon which his adopted mother had painted her dream. He took with him a love medicine that was made by the oldest Shaman among all the people and a flute upon which he had learned to play love songs. When he started for the chief's house, his oldest sister said to him, "Watch for Iktomi. Do not let him fool you." The young man replied, "I am too wise, Iktomi can't fool me. He went on his way, thinking about the beautiful young girl he was to have for his wife. When he came to a spring of water he sat down in the shade and played a love song on his flute. While he was playing, another young man appeared before him, but he was very poor and had only the poorest kind of clothing. All he had was a breech cloth and an old ragged robe, but he was good looking and strong. He said to the young man, "You play a love song very well. If you should play that way to a young woman she would take you for her man." This pleased the young man, for lie thought that he would play that way for the chief's daughter. He lighted his pipe and gave the other young man a smoke. Then the other young man said, "I would like to hear you play again." So he played another song and the second young man said, "Oh that is more pleasing than the other; no young woman could hear you play that and resist you." This pleased the young man so that he said, "I will teach you to play that way so that you may also get a woman." He taught the other young man to play like he did. Then the other young man said, "I think you are very strong. Let us wrestle to see who is the stronger." They wrestled and the young man threw the second young man. Then the poor young man said, "I think you are a great hunter, let us shoot the arrow and see who can make the best shot." They shot arrows at a target and the young man made the best shot. Then the other young man said, "Let us run a race and see who can run the faster." They ran a hundred paces and the young man won the race. Then the other young man said, "Let us run around this spring and know who can run the greatest distance. But the young man said, "No, let us run to that high hill, a long way off and back." The other young man agreed to this. The young man stripped himself of all his clothing except his breech cloth. He piled all his fine clothing, his pipe, his robe, and the flute near the spring. The other young man said, "Let us hide our clothing, someone may come and take everything while we are running." They hid their clothing, the young man putting his clothing in a pile and other young man putting his robe at another place. The way they had to run was very hilly and the other young man said, "I run very slowdown a hill but I run very fast (p. 193) up a hill." The young man said, "I run very fast down a hill, but I cannot run so fast up a hill." Then the other young man said, "You had better run as fast as you can down the hills, because I will run by you up the hills, if you don't." They started from the spring up a hill. The other young man ran as fast as he could up the hill and reached the top first; but when they ran down hill, the other young man ran very slowly and the young man ran as fast as he could and passed him very quickly so that he was at the top of the next hill before the other young man was at the bottom of the first hill. Then the young man looked back at the other young man and laughed and cried out to him, "I will beat you badly for I will be at the top of the next hill before you will come in sight on top of this hill." Then the other young man said, "Yes that is so. Do not wait for me." So the young man ran on easily for he knew he could beat the other young man. Before the other young man got to the bottom of the first hill, he turned round and ran quickly back to the spring and took all the young man's clothing, his robe, the pipe and the elk teeth and the flute and ran on the trail to the chief's tipi. When the young man got to the high hill he sat down to rest, for he thought he could beat the other young man easily now. He waited, but the other young man did not come. Then he thought be was lost so he went slowly back over the way he had run to look for him. When he got to the spring he looked about but did not find him, so he said, "I will put on my clothing and take my things and then I will hunt for him." But when he went for his things he found them all gone. Then he knew that the other young man was Iktomi. He started to run as fast as he could on the trail to the chief's tipi. But he had run so much that he was tired, and could not run very fast. It was very late at night when he got to the chief's tipi. He found that Iktomi had gotten there very early in the day and had given the chief a smoke of cansasa, so that the chief was pleased. Iktomi had given the chief's daughter all the elk teeth so that she was pleased. He had played to her on the flute the love songs he had taught him so that she could not resist him and she had taken Iktomi for her man. When the young man came dressed in his breech cloth and the old ragged robe that Iktomi had left, they would not believe him when he said he was the young man to whom the chief had promised his daughter. They let him eat at the feast and then told him to go away. He went home and told his sisters. His oldest sister said, "I told you to watch for Iktomi." [J. R. Walker, The Sun Dance and Other Ceremonies of the Oglala Division of The Teton Dakota, The Anthropological Papers of the American Museum of Natural History, Vol. XVI, Part II (New York: The American Museum of Natural History, 1917)]

Cf. the Oglala story of Iron Hawk, which is also related to Įčorúšika and His Brothers (Martha Warren Beckwith, "Mythology of the Oglala Dakota," The Journal of American Folk-lore, 43 (1930), #170 (October-December.): 382-386).

Red Feather

Paradigm. [1] There was a boy whose shabby appearance belied his true powers. [2] A boy lives at the outskirts of the village with his grandmother. [3] A red bird appears in the village. [4] The chief orders that the bird be killed. [5] He offers (one of) his daughters in marriage to whomever succeeds. [6] Everyone derided the boy for attempting to compete. [7] The chief sends for a famous archer. [8] The archer has magical arrows. [9] A trickster meets up with the archer by a tree. [10] The trickster persuades the archer to shoot a bird in the tree for him. [11] The young man successfully shoots the bird. [12] However, the trickster shoots at the same time. [13] The trickster claims that it was his arrow that had hit the bird. [14] The trickster persuades the archer to climb the tree to fetch the bird that he shot. [15] The trickster causes the archer to be bound to the tree. [16] The trickster takes the belongings of the archer in hopes of winning the princess for himself. [17] One of the princesses discovers the archer bound to the tree and cuts him loose.[18]. The young man is the actual winner, but the eldest daughter does not marry him because he is so unclean. [19] Nevertheless, the second daughter accepts him as he is. [20] The young man takes his wife to a body of water. [21] He jumps in and disappears. [22] When he comes out, he is so handsome that she does not recognize him. [23] She only recognizes him when he shows her a mark on his body. [24] When the elder sister sees him, she wants him as her husband, but the younger sister will not give him up.

Hočąk. [2] An orphan boy lives at the outskirts of the village with his grandmother. [3] A bird of red plumage lands on a tree near the chief's lodge. [4] The chief orders that the bird be killed. [5] He offers his eldest daughter in marriage to whomever succeeds. [6] His grandmother derided the boy for attempting to compete. [9] The orphan meets up with a cheat named "Ape" at the tree. [10] Ape and the orphan compete with one another to shoot the bird. [11] The orphan successfully shoots the bird. [12] However, Ape shoots at the same time. [13] Ape claims that it was his arrow that had hit the bird. [16] Ape takes the bird away from the orphan in hopes of winning the princess for himself. [0] The chief recognizes Ape as the victor, and awards his eldest daughter to him. [19] Nevertheless, the second daughter accepts him as he is. [20] The orphan takes his wife to a lake. [21] He jumps in and disappears. [22] When he comes out, he is so handsome that she does not recognize him. [23] She only recognizes him when he shows her a scar on his knee. [24] When the elder sister sees him, she wants him as her husband, but the younger sister will not give him up.

Ioway. [-] Blood Clot Boy leaves for another village. [1] He took off his finery and dressed in a breech cloth. [2] He entered a lodge at the outskirts where an old lady lived. [3] There was a mysterious bird that hovered motionless above the village. [4] The chief orders that the bird be killed. [5] He offers his eldest daughter in marriage to whomever succeeds. [6] Everyone derided the boy for attempting to compete. [11] The young man drew back his arrow and on his very first shot he killed the bird. [18] The chief proclaims him the winner, but his eldest daughter finds him too lice ridden to accept. [19] However, the second daughter accepts him as her husband. [20] Blood Clot Boy takes his wife to a creek. [21] He jumps in and disappears. [22] When he comes out, he is so handsome that she does not recognize him. [23] She only recognizes him when he shows her a birth mark. [24] When the elder sister sees him, she wants him as her husband, but the younger sister will not give him up.

Lakota 1. [3] A giant red eagle terrorizes the people of a village. [4] The chief orders that the bird be killed. [5] He offers his daughter in marriage to whomever succeeds. [7] The chief sends for the Avenger (Blood Clot Boy) who is a famous archer. [8] The Avenger has a magical arrow. [9] The Avenger meets up with Iktomi at a tree. [10] Iktomi persuades the archer to shoot a bird in the tree for him. [11] The Avenger successfully shoots the bird, and later shoots the eagle as well. [14] Iktomi persuades the archer to climb the tree to fetch the bird that he shot. [15] Iktomi causes the archer to be bound to the tree. [16] Iktomi takes the magical arrow of the archer in hopes of winning the princess for himself. [17] This very princess discovers the Avenger bound to the tree and cuts him loose. [18] Some remarked on how ugly Iktomi looked. [-] Iktomi is not able to shoot the eagle. [-] Now the chief knew that the man before them was an impostor who was aping the real Avenger. [19] The Avenger marries the princess. [22] The true Avenger, handsome to behold, was now among them. [-] Iktomi is strapped to a burial scaffold.

Teton Lakota 2. [2] Blood Clot Boy (Weyóta) lives alone with Old Woman. [3] In the morning a red eagle circles over the village and at noon a red fox runs through the camp. [4] The chief orders that whoever kills the red eagle and red fox, [5] would have his eldest daughter Ćokapatipi ("Middle of the Tipi") for his wife. [7] The chief did this because he believed that only Weyóta could accomplish the feat and become his son-in-law. [6] The grandmother is surprised that the boy is going to compete, but makes him a set of clothes anyway. [9] On his way to the village, Weyota meets Iktomi. [10] A prairie chicken alighted on a nearby tree. Iktomi asked Weyota to shoot the bird for him, [11] so Weyota put an arrow into it, [14] but the bird hangs up in the branches. When Weyota climbs the tree to retrieve the bird, [15] Iktomi says, "Stick, stick, stick," and Weyota becomes glued to the tree. [16] Iktomi took all the clothing and other belongings of Weyota, and went to the village. He is mistaken for Weyota and marries Cokapatipi. [-] Iktomi tries to shoot the eagle and the red fox, but cannot hit either one. [1] Weyota changed himself into an ugly little boy. [17] An old woman happened by and freed Weyota from the tree, taking him home with her to be a playmate for her little grandson. [-] (The story of Waziya.) [-] Weyota sends the old woman to Iktomi and demands that he surrender Weyota's property to her. The second time he does give it up to her. [18] The chief suspects that the boy is the real Weyota, and [19] lets him marry his second daughter, Hakaktaki ("Youngest"). [18] Her elder sister objects to him because he is so dirty. [11] Weyota shoots the red fox and eventually the red eagle. [20] Weyota takes his wife to a river. [21] He throws her in, and she disappears below the waters. [22] Later she reemerges beautiful and wearing beautiful clothing. [21] The young man also jumps in the river and disappear. [22] He later emerges as a handsome young man in magnificent clothing. [23] When they returned the people in the village did not recognize them. [24] When Ćokapatipi sees him, she wants to become his seond wife, but Hakaktaki would not give her consent.

Blackfoot. [1] Beaver, one of the Twins, was a small, dirty boy. [2] He was taken in by an old grandmother who pitied him. [3] A prairie chicken sat in the branches of a tree. [4] The chief orders that the bird be killed. [5] He offers his eldest daughter in marriage to whomever succeeds. [6] Everyone derided the boy for attempting to compete. [9] Crow Arrow is at the tree with Beaver. [11] In his second attempt, the boy hit the bird. [12] However, Crow Arrow shoots at the same time. [13] Crow Arrow inserts his arrow into the bird. [18] The spectators do not accept Crow Arrow, but the chief considers the boy too dirty to be given his daughter. But in a second contest he wins again and is given the girl, but she refused to marry him. [19] Nevertheless, the second daughter accepts him as he is. [20i] The young man tells his wife and grandmother to leave the lodge. [23] He paints himself yellow and lengthens his hair. He now becomes handsome.

White Feather / Red Feather

The following is what can be abstracted from the Paradigm for White Feathers and the Paradigm for Red Feathers.

Paradigm. [1] A powerful man announces a contest in which the reward will be marriage to a princess. [2] A man and a trickster or bad spirit engage in the contest. [3] The man wins the contest, but the trickster escapes the consequences of defeat by trickery. [4] The trickster uses magic to either glue the man to a tree, or cause him to become a dog. [5] The trickster then takes all the man's belongings and assumes his identity. [6] Two sisters, having heard of the fame of the man, expect to marry him. [7] When the imposter shows up, the eldest sister thinks he is the man, and proceeds to marry him. [8] However, the real man has become aesthetically degradated. [9] Nevertheless, the younger sister takes him in and treats him well. [10] The man frees himself from the enchantment and is restored to his former glory. [11] The man marries the younger princess to the chagrin of her elder sister.


Binding to the tree sounds rather like the Lakota Sun Dance, where the sacrificers are bound to a central tree by ropes attached to their flesh. The alternance between binding to a tree and being turned into a dog fits the situation of Sirius, which is stuck on the edge of the Milky Way, often homologized to a tree. The star is also widely identified with a dog.